Egypt to temporarily open Rafah border crossing with Gaza

Egypt to temporarily open Rafah border crossing with Gaza
1 min read
21 February, 2018
Egyptian officials said the Rafah crossing will operate from Wednesday for four days, with the Palestinian embassy in Cairo confirming the opening of Gaza's only gateway to the outside world.
The Rafah crossing is Gaza's only gateway to the outside world. [Getty]

Egypt says it will open its border with the Gaza Strip this week for four days on a humanitarian basis amid a military campaign against Islamic militants in the restive northern Sinai Peninsula.

Egyptian officials said the Rafah crossing will operate from Wednesday for four days, with the Palestinian embassy in Cairo confirming the opening of Gaza's only gateway to the outside world.

Thousands of Gaza residents are on travel lists, with most of them medical patients, students and holders of residency permits of other countries.

Only a few thousand will make it out in the time allotted.

Egypt has kept Rafah largely sealed off since 2013, after the ouster of Egypt's elected Islamist President Mohammed Morsi.

Israel has maintained a crippling siege of the Gaza Strip for more than a decade which it says is necessary to isolate Hamas, with whom it has fought three wars since 2008.

Human rights groups say it amounts to collective punishment of Gaza's two million residents.